President Will Outline Health Care Funding

02.26.09 | FL News Team

President Obama will pay for health care reform by raising taxes on wealthy Americans and trimming government spending. Obama sends his first budget to Congress today, and it calls for raising 634-billion dollars over ten years for revamping health care.

"The Wall Street Journal" reports that roughly half that amount would come from slashing tax deductions on the wealthiest Americans. Households in the top two tax brackets would gradually see a big dent in deductions for mortgage interest and charitable giving. They would also be asked to pay a higher premium for Medicare's prescription drug plan. 

The second half of the reform money would come from slashing Medicare spending on hospitals, medications and managed care. The news of spending cuts drew only a mild response from those industries, according to the "Journal," since most are lining up behind the Obama administration's call for health-care reform.

The White House says the 634-billion would merely be a downpayment on health-care reform and Congress must help raise the rest. The true cost of expanding health care to more Americans would likely cost more than a trillion dollars over the next decade.